Some nice beef mince that needed using up lead to a rather tasty alternate take on stovies. Now don’t get us wrong, we aren’t trying to ponce up stovies, just trying different things… This one is well worth a try and the base recipe can be altered to use any meaty (or veggy) treats that you fancy. This should serve 4-5 hungry tummies.
500g good quality minced beef
1kg potatoes (floury, waxy, whatever)
2 onions, diced
500ml beef stock
1 tbs balsamic vinegar
1 bay leaf
1tsp dried herbs (something nice and earthy like thyme, or whatever goes with your meat of choice. With lamb try oregano and avoid mint)
salt and white pepper
Start by frying your onion in some oil over a gentle heat, you want them to be nice and soft but not coloured. Chop most of your potatoes into bite size pieces but with two spuds dice them very finely. These will help to really thicken the sauce without the using flour which can make the stovies claggy.
Add your mince to the onion and allow to colour, breaking it up slightly in the pan. Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer for an hour or so. Stir well, the small diced potatoes should break up. Season to taste, lots of pepper is always a winner in our house. Serve with oatcakes (if you’re leaning towards poncey) or lashings of brown sauce if not!
As mentioned the basic recipe can be altered to your taste, try swapping the mince for good quality sausages (either whole, or skinned and broken up). Mr Stovies’ mum used to have sausage stovies waiting on the Aga after rugby training and it’s one of his fondest childhood memories. Then again, she also likes ‘raw stovies’ which is the above recipe but without ANY meat. Weird. Mrs Stovies, being a Fifer believes that stovies are only stovies if the meat is corned beef.
Whatever meaty (or otherwise) goodness you choose, just stick to the quantities and timings and all will be ok.